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The Hope Family Calendar By Mike Gayle

The Hope Family CalendarMike Gayle is back with a new book this Autumn called ‘The Hope Family Calendar’

Tom Hope is broken. Ever since his wife Laura died he hasn’t been the same man, and definitely not the same father. Luckily for Tom his mother-in-law Linda is around to pick up the pieces and look after his two struggling daughters, Evie and Lola. But Tom getting arrested on the first anniversary of his wife’s death is the last straw for Linda.
In a last bid attempt to make Tom reconnect with his daughters she takes drastic action and leaves for Australia. With two fast-maturing daughters Tom has to learn how to accept his responsibilities and navigate the newly discovered world of single fatherhood – starting immediately. With only himself to rely on, will Tom fall back into grief or finally step up and be the father his girls need?

In Mike’s latest book, we meet Tom Hope, a man who’s heart is broken after his wife was tragically killed in a car accident. Overcome with grief and not wanting to face up to the truth, he throws himself into his work and leaves the care of his two daughters to his sympathetic and understanding mother in law, Linda. But as the time draws closer to the anniversary of Laura’s death, Linda decides that it’s time for her to start living and for Tom to act like a father to his daughters, who he has kept his distance from.

Linda, decides to travel to Australia, to fulfil a life long dream of visiting one of her best friends and hopes that with this sudden break, Tom will step up to the plate and begin to behave like the father that he was before Laura died.

The story is about two people who deal with grief differently, we have Linda who naturally steps into the role of mother, she looks after the two little girls and helps them understand as best they can why their mother is no longer around, she’s gentle and sweet and does everything with little or no complaint. Meanwhile Tom, can’t handle the thought of Laura not being around, he finds it difficult to express his emotions and finds it easier to work than spend time in the house and be surrounded by everything that reminds him of what used to be.

With Linda’s sudden departure to Australia, Tom takes a break from work, to devote to getting to know his little girls all over game, this makes for sweet and tender reading as the small unit interact and tentatively get to know each other and deal with their combined grief and pain for the mother that was taken away. As Tom grows in strength, we see a man become more happier and confident in himself as he realises that he can cope as a single parent family and with new friends and relationships along the way, the future is a little bit brighter. Whilst on the other side of the world, Linda has to deal with having time to herself and looking after her needs instead of her family.

A sensitively written story that made for poignant and bittersweet reading, Mike returns with a beautiful tale about starting over and putting ghosts to rest.

You can buy The Hope Family Calendar from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Falling Leaves And Fireworks By Chrissie Manby

Falling Leaves And Fireworks‘Falling Leaves And Fireworks’ is a short story by Chrissie Manby.

The thirty-first of October usually marks the start of the party season in the Benson Edwards household but, having recently lost his beloved cat Fishy, little Jack, aged eight, isn’t ready to celebrate. When the rest of the Bensons and their neighbours decide to throw a Halloween fancy-dress bash in an attempt to cheer Jack up, however, not everything goes to plan as Mark and Ronnie play a ghostly prank which inadvertently sparks a local scandal. By the time Bonfire Night rolls around, will their neighbourhood relations be up in in smoke? And will Jack have rediscovered his sparkle?

This story story sees the return of the Benson Edwards family, the fun and warmhearted family from Chrissie’s successful ‘Proper Family’ series and this story is solely seen through the eyes of Ronnie, the older sister of the family. Her family is heartbroken when the family cat suddenly dies, particularly her youngest son Jack who is distraught that his feline friend has departed. Whilst Ronnie worries about her little boy, her eccentric neighbour Cathy is convinced that she can contact the spiritual world and one day Ronnie and her husband Mark decide to play a joke on their naive neighbour, with hilarious results.

I’ve been a fan of the ‘Proper Family’ series since the very beginning and love the characters, the story has just the right combination of humour with tenderness that makes the book perfect reading. The story is only 94 pages long, so it’s an ideal length to curl up with and is the perfect distraction from the cold and windy weather. Fun from the start, ‘Falling Leaves And Fireworks’ is an enchanting tale filled with fun moments, tender scenes and a ghostly cat that makes a lovely albeit short return to the heart-warming family.

You can buy Falling Leaves and Fireworks: a funny, feel-good autumnal enovella: (A Proper Family eNovella) from Amazon

Win A Copy Of A Fairy Tale For Christmas By Chrissie Manby

A Fairytale For ChristmasI’ve received a second copy of Chrissie Manby’s new book called ‘A Fairy Tale For Christmas’ and I would like to share the festive cheer and give the book away to one lucky person. I recently read and reviewed this book and it’s a lovely heartwarming story.

The story of ‘A Fairy Tale For Christmas’ is –

It’s the festive season and the members of the Newbay Theatre Society, more commonly known as the NEWTS, are preparing to put on a show. Being cast as Cinderella is the realization of a dream for newcomer Kirsty, not least because she hopes starring in a panto under the direction of her boyfriend Jon will bring them closer together.But Kirsty soon learns that it’s not all glitter and good cheer behind the scenes at the amateur theatre as bitter rivalries nurtured through decades, wardrobe mishaps and suspicious near-fatal accidents threaten to derail the production. And then there’s Prince Charming himself. Will working together with Jon bring Kirsty her happy ever after… or reveal their love to be nothing but a ‘showmance’?

To be in with a chance of winning this book, simply answer the following question by leaving your answer in the comment box below.

What is the name of Newbay Theatre Society?

The winner will be revealed on Monday 14th November. Good luck.

Chrissie Manby Releases New Book – A Fairytale For Christmas

A Fairytale For ChristmasChrissie Manby is back with a new Christmas book this year called ‘A Fairytale For Christmas’.

The story of ‘A Fairytale For Christmas’ is –

What could be more magical at Christmas than a fairy tale come true?

It’s the festive season and the members of the Newbay Theatre Society, more commonly known as the NEWTS, are preparing to put on a show. Being cast as Cinderella is the realization of a dream for newcomer Kirsty, not least because she hopes starring in a panto under the direction of her boyfriend Jon will bring them closer together.

But Kirsty soon learns that it’s not all glitter and good cheer behind the scenes at the amateur theatre as bitter rivalries nurtured through decades, wardrobe mishaps and suspicious near-fatal accidents threaten to derail the production. And then there’s Prince Charming himself. Will working together with Jon bring Kirsty her happy ever after… or reveal their love to be nothing but a ‘showmance’?

With Christmas just around the corner, it’s going to take more than a Fairy Godmother to get Kirsty and her cast-mates to the ball.

‘A Fairytale For Christmas’ sounds like another heartwarming book from the Sunday Times bestselling author.

You can pre-order A Fairytale For Christmas Amazon from and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 3rd November 2016.

Mike Gayle Reveals New Book – The Hope Family Calendar

The Hope Family CalendarMike Gayle is back with a new book this Autumn called ‘The Hope Family Calendar’

The story of ‘The Hope Family Calendar’ is –

Tom Hope is broken. Ever since his wife Laura died he hasn’t been the same man, and definitely not the same father. Luckily for Tom his mother-in-law Linda is around to pick up the pieces and look after his two struggling daughters, Evie and Lola.

But Tom getting arrested on the first anniversary of his wife’s death is the last straw for Linda.
In a last bid attempt to make Tom reconnect with his daughters she takes drastic action and leaves for Australia. With two fast-maturing daughters Tom has to learn how to accept his responsibilities and navigate the newly discovered world of single fatherhood – starting immediately.

With only himself to rely on, will Tom fall back into grief or finally step up and be the father his girls need?

As a huge fan of Mike’s, I’m really looking forward to reading ‘The Hope Family Calendar’

You can pre-order The Hope Family Calendar from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 20th October 2016.